February 24, 2014
By Simon Chambers
On the night of February 9, the region surrounding Bujumbura, the capital city of Burundi, was hit by “one of the most heavy rain falls and thunder ever in history”, which resulted in over 120 people dead and injured, and thousands of households living without shelter. At least 1159 houses were washed away entirely by mudslides in this hilly region.
PWRDF has contributed an initial $5000 to the ACT Alliance‘s $60,000 Rapid Response Fund grant to the Province of the Anglican Church of Burundi (a PWRDF partner) and other ACT agencies for relief efforts in the wake of the storm. Anglican parishes have already been distributing cash to buy food and necessary household supplies to the stunned survivors of the storm. According to one priest, “The various reactions on receiving our offering: pride, resentment of humiliation, effusive thanks, stunned silence, a curtsey even. But most thanked us with quiet dignity.”
PWRDF is continuing to monitor the situation in Burundi through the Anglican Province and the Diocese of Bujumbura, as well as the ACT Alliance, and will respond as appropriate to the need both immediately and in the longer term, as the rice, cassava and corn crops of thousands of households were also lost in the storm.
Please pray for all those affected by this disaster, and for those working to bring relief to the region.